By Chelsea Spyres
“You have so much time, try not to feel rushed.”
On our first full day in London one of our hosts Shannon spoke these words to me while we sat on a blanket in a park, after sharing a meal of mushroom risotto from the Saturday market. These words grounded me in a really important way that week in London and has many days since. So often I (and we as a culture) are so rushed, running from one thing to the next, thinking about the to-do list, the deadlines, that I (we) forget to see what is right in front of us.
After Shannon and I spoke for a while I sat and journaled as many of my cohort explored the area. This is not normal for me, normally I would have been in the midst of the group, not wanting to miss out on a moment of community bonding or adventure, but for this moment, I wanted to be still and I wanted to empty all that was in my mind. This is a portion of what I wrote on that perfect sunny London afternoon…
Recently I have been trying to accept this and live freely into this. While things feel immediate and necessary and life changing, things can also take longer and still be good and successful. It does not have to be now, but maybe for now I can continue in the ways God has called me to St. Matthew’s and discern how to live into the fullest expression of who I am and who God has created me to be. The crazy thing is for one of the first times I am beginning to feel and live into the freedom of who I am. Comfort and freedom just to be. To not have to prove my worth or my belonging in a group but to live into myself…Relationship with God and with myself is a place that I need to make sure I don’t forget about. These relationships are just as important if not more important than those with others...Grace is a crazy thing, now if only I can remember it not just something I give, but sometime I am given…
Grace. Freedom. Joy. These themes keep returning since our time in London, and for that I am grateful. Something about the intentional, slow, present time in London has transformed me, and is calling me into a new way of living. It has grounded me on the chaotic days since returning and continues to work its way deep into my heart as I dream and discern about how else God is calling me forward.